The tug of war between the ego and the spirit


002In life we seem to have so many challenges to face and obstacles to overcome. Without adversity and or the challenges in our life our minds and souls would become like a stagnant pool of water. Without having some kind of disturbance or motion water becomes foul over time and when we are unchallenged in life we too become somewhat foul. Foul in the sense we have no personal growth nor any motivation to move forward or to better ourselves. Even those on the path towards enlightenment and well as those that reach it there is always some kind of challenge or adversity to face. Enlightenment does not mean life can not or will not throw at you the challenges and obstacles of life it just means you are more aware of the whole process and that you have the knowledge / wisdom to deal with them. Of course you may outgrow and get to the point many of the challenges are no longer a part of your life but newer ones will appear to replace them. You are given challenges and adversities to face that are of your level not ones below or above your present level. God will not put upon you anything that you are not able to overcome or deal with in time. Sometimes the challenges you face may seem to much for you to handle but those are the ones meant to help you grow both spiritually and mentally. Life’s adversities and its challenges build character and skills . They also teach us the lessons we need to learn as well as help guide us toward a closer relationship with God.

To follow the path of enlightenment, righteousness and piety are all spiritual paths towards spiritual growth. Any path that is selfish or is for the ego/I is one towards the carnal and degrades the spirit. If you pay attention most of what religions call evil or sinful deal with the selfish nature of the ego such as greed, lust, envy and apathy. Then on the other end of the scale such as good and or righteous is the selfless acts and compassionate nature or charity, love, brotherhood and forgiveness. Seems one focuses on the self and distracts one from both their spiritual growth as well as from the needs of others. While the other focuses on the well-being of others and promotes spiritual growth. The tug of war between the ego and the spirit is one that we must face throughout our physical existence.

Just some thoughts for today

Peace and Love be with you all.

Raymond Barbier

The great school we call life – Part of The Lesson Plan


In life we must face the fact we will make mistakes and sometimes choose unwisely. This is all a part of the lesson plan in the great school we call life. The sad part is sometimes we are doomed to repeat a mistake or poor choice many times until we finally get the message or learn the lesson we needed too. I believe up to our last breath and thought we are learning something new. It’s all apart of our spiritual evolution or education. Question is do we come back to live here again in this world until we learn all the lessons that can be taught here? Or do we simply move on to another place, dimension or even heaven or a hell. Those questions are really the kind that you can not answer for you will not ever know until its time to move on from this life. Personally I hope there is a heaven and a very forgiving god waiting on the other side. What I was brought up to believe is the Christian faith and I still hold on to that belief as I try to keep an open mind to other religions and philosophies. Each philosophy and religion carries with it some form of lessons both in morality and discipline. For the most part they seem to teach humility and selflessness along with compassion and self dignity, They try and inspire us to strive towards a more civilized and compassionate world, a world were greed and lust are no longer as well as a world where no one wants nor needs due to the lack of selfishness. Unfortunately too many of us overlook the lessons in both the philosophies and religions. This leaves us in a world where the select few who have the power and the money are in control as the masses who barely make a living or are starving to struggle just to survive.

So far we have come in the short time we have inhabited this world but we still are so far away from our true potential spiritually and as a species in whole. We have had the stone age, bronze age, iron age, steel age, industrial age and now the technological or information age. We still need to reach our spiritual age before we become our own executioner. For we have technologies that could destroy all life on our planet and yet we are still children spiritually and this leaves us in harm’s way. Without spiritual growth and wisdom we are likely to cause our own extinction before we ever reach our full potential as a species.

Just my two cents worth,

Raymond Barbier

Start looking at the world not only through our own eyes


006 Living in a society where there is no value to anything, where we want everything and want it yesterday. Sensations both old and new are the fuel and the faster we can get them the more we want them. Addicted to our senses and a slave to our need for stimuli we race forward without taking the time to truly enjoy the world around us. We leave friendships and loves behind us in search of the perfect life, we fall to the deception that is such a thing as a perfect life or a perfect relationship. Too much too fast and we are approaching either an overload or the tragic end to our fast past world. So quick to judge others but slow to see the imperfections in our own lives. We live our lives so quickly and so unaware of the happiness we could obtain as well as the beauty all around us.

Even the children are loosing their innocence way too early, imagination is becoming an extinct quality as well as the ability to see the world in its true majestic form. We allow politics, religions and philosophies to divide our world and keep us from reaching our true potential as a species. It is not our differences that makes us unstable or weak, it is our inability to use those differences as the strength they really are. Our ability to change, adapt and to exchange ideas makes us a very unique and wondrous species. Our lack of tolerance and our inability to truly see each other in a compassionate light leaves us in constant turmoil. We need to start looking at the world not only through our own eyes but through the eyes of others, we must start being more selfless in the way we think and live. Individuality is a good thing but not seeing the whole picture due to only perceiving things though our own eyes  is a path to eventual destruction. We must realize that our personal perception of the world around us is not the only true perception. Reality is the sum of every living creature’s perception of the physical universe.

We need to slow down and smell the flowers, behold the beauty of nature and enjoy the company we are blessed to keep. For if we keep on forging into the future like a speeding bullet we will eventually burn out. Stand as many but as one, seek out the truth of all things and live each day as it may be our last. Loving ourselves and all that is around us, fearing nothing but our own deception. Do right upon others and forgive those who are not wise enough to see the error in their ways. We also should remember to forgive our own short comings for we are all but human. But being human is a grand thing for we are children of the great creator. God gave us life and that in itself makes us special and unique. Each of us were given gifts and abilities, each different from the other but the same in their purpose. We mustn’t waste those gifts not take them for granted. We should use them for the good of mankind and share them with all life.

Very random thoughts that I feel needed to be shared. Right or Wrong they are here for you to read.
Raymond Barbier

For the physical is self minded and the spiritual is selfless


p10234  There is always a constant battle going on within, the physical and the spiritual struggling for absolute control. The lack of balance within is what creates the power struggle and unless the balance between the physical and spiritual self is restored all will remain in chaos. Though the body may be considered nothing but the vehicle for the soul it is also our primary way to interact with the physical world. In the physical realm both the spirit and body are equally important and necessary for our existence. So balance of the two are essential to the fulfillment of our time in the physical world.

One should take care of their spiritual needs as well as the physical. The body needs food, exercise and rest and so does the soul. If you don’t feed your soul it will starve and if you don’t exercise it, it will become week and unhealthy. Even setting a day aside for you to put the spiritualistic aside to let it rest is good. Feed your soul the scriptures of the religion you follow and exercise the soul through following the rituals of your faith. Be it meditation, prayer, fasting or serving the less fortunate it does not matter as long as you do it with conviction and sincerity.

For the physical is self minded and the spiritual is selfless, so the balance of both is the key to living and the secret to being happy. Put more emphasis on the quality of what you have in life more so than the quantity, for materialism leads to a more self-centered than selfless life. Plus all the material wealth and possessions one has can be lost or stolen, the peace, love and happiness you possess can not be stolen only given away. The love you give away usually will return to you exponentially down the line and  it is not always returned from the one you gave it to.

Try not to judge others, but if you must do it so with a light heart for how you judge others is how one day you shall be judged in return. This is why compassion and understanding is a must in one’s life, for if you show compassion to others then you shall receive compassion likewise. It all boils down to the idea of karma or the old saying what comes around goes around. the idea of karma is supported by The third of Newton’s laws of motion of classical mechanics. The fact that forces always occur in pairs. Every action is accompanied by a reaction of equal magnitude but opposite direction pretty much sums it up.

Well enough of my Spiritual Nonsense for now.
Seek the truth (for yourself) and it shall set you free.

Raymond Barbier

Learn to love and accept ourselves as we are


006 The many yeas or tears and fears take a toll on this aging body. The mind becomes hardened and slow to respond from age and its lack of use. The soul calls out for happiness, peace and solitude as the mind seeks a rational solution. Music becomes a refuge for the soul and the soother of the chaotic mind. Fear of death rears its head occasionally to remind me of my mortality. Yet I fight on and press forward into the uncertain future. Exploring outwardly as much as inwardly to find the truths as well as the balance in my life. Finding answers one day only to lose them the next. Seems it’s a vicious cycle of my spiritual path and my timeline.

Still fighting the little child within me that craves to be loved and accepted while I try to establish the blueprint of whom I desire to be. Time is no longer a friend like it used to be in my days of youth. Between the aging of the body and the knowledge of my own mortality I find myself struggling to make it through each day. The distractions of everyday life become stumbling blocks on my spiritual path. Too many light shows, bells and whistles going off to keep focus most of the time. Though I manage to block them out for the most part. The struggle to find a balance between my religion and my spirituality is not an easy task.

It is so hard to have compassion for everyone when you are surrounded by so many who care not for themselves nor for others. So much fear, anger, greed and such a lack of love in this world. Sometimes I believe people are just terrified by the thought of loving and accepting each other. I guess it must be the fear of being hurt and the experiences they had with those they loved before. If there are no risks involved then there is no real benefit in the action of loving. First off we must learn to accept and love who we are, for each one of us are unique and special beings. We must learn to love and accept ourselves as we are before we can love each other. Through self-examination and self forgiveness we learn to forgive the shortcomings and sins of others.

As my days grow shorter I realize that though we are all individual we are also a part of a complex whole. I see all of us as small pieces of a magnificent collective of thoughts, feelings and ideals. Independently operating, yet somehow collectively manifesting the reality we live in and forming the future yet to come. This gives each of us the ability to enact change on a mass scale by creating a chain reaction. The right words, thoughts or actions can create a chain reaction that could change the world and reality we currently live in. A single voice in the dark can grow to become many voices and eventually change the course of not only mankind but the reality in which we live.

 

Well enough of my babbling for now.
May wisdom be your light and Love be the fuel on your life journey
Raymond Barbier

The physical life as a classroom for the soul


Rembrandt's Philosopher in Meditation (detail). I always had the question of why am I here and what is the purpose of my life? Many years I pondered on that question, sought out the question through self-examination and discovery. Always coming up short and lacking the definite answer. Now in my mid 40’s I think it finally hit me, I am here to be the best me I can be, to live my life to the fullest for both myself and god. The meaning of life is life itself, the purpose of life is to be the best person you can be.

For I see the physical life as a classroom for the soul, a place for us to learn to be compassionate and to learn to overcome the great obstacle of the Ego. The ego is the part of oneself that is selfish and seeks out its own gratification. It is the presence of the flesh and thus it wishes to satisfy the flesh’s lusts and desires. The true self is the living spirit god gave us, it’s the part that feels compassion, love and is always  selfless in its actions and in its intentions. It longs for peace, happiness and for harmony in life. Life is the battlefield between these two parts of our consciousness and the purpose of life is to learn from the battle and from the mistakes and or correct choices we make.

 

Well enough about that, Blessings to you all

Raymond Barbier

” I am more than the sum of all my experiences” ~ Raymond Barbier

So a fool I may be


021  I am just a fool seeking the path to wisdom, I am just an average Joe trying to become a sage. I had walked many paths and have taken many turns on my quest for wisdom only to come full circle to back where I had started. I am yet a fool, but some wisdom I have gained along the way. I am still an average Joe walking on the many roads of life. I keep moving forward in hope of finding wisdom and becoming wise before my time here is over.

I may be a fool but I have learned that no man or woman is greater than another. No ones life is less important than another’s because we all contribute to the world around us. I have found that being happy is just as much as a choice as being sad. We choose for the most part how we relate to this world. I also learned it isn’t how much you have but how much you love and enjoy the things your are blessed with that makes life good.

So a fool I may be, but a fool that has found wisdom through his mistakes as well as from his few good choices. I will keep learning and seeking out wisdom for that is my path to follow.

For what a man will be remembered for is not how rich, powerful or famous he may have been, he will be remembered for how he treated others along with his actions good or bad. For every one of our words and all of actions are a reflection of who we truly are within. They also affect everyone and thing around us in one way or another. Good works may not get one into heaven but they can create a better world to live in. 

Forgiving yourself is just as important as forgiving others”

Raymond Barbier

Choose your own path to follow


Norman Rockwell Mosaic  "The Golden Rule&...

Image by United Nations Photo via Flickr

You have only one life to live in this time and in this space.
What you say and do is what counts in the life we face.
Trials of our heart and tests of our will we must face along the path we chose.
We must be true to ourselves and reap our rewards as well as pay our dues.
We are responsible for our own lives and those lives we have influenced along the way.
Life as short as it is we must make the most of each moment and always seize the day.
Follow the golden rule and treat others with kindness and respect the rights of others.
Regardless of ones race, religion and nationality we all are spiritual sisters and brothers.
Cast off your fear and embrace the truth that is within your heart as well as your mind.
Open your eyes to the world that is around you and you might be surprised what you may find.
Awaken from the deep sleep your mind and heart is in to live life to the fullest everyday.
Be who you truly are and walk a path of understanding and embrace the truth in every way.
Choose your own path to follow and be the person you want to be.
Know thyself and be true to your feelings and let your mind be free.

ok, enough babbling for now
Peace, Raymond Barbier

But a Fool Can Be a Wiseman Some of The Time


Vector image of two human figures with hands i...

Looking back on my life and at all the friends that came into my life and have gone away, I remember the fun and boring times with a sense of bliss. Wondering am I, About where they all are and how there lives have turned out. Pondering on the possibility if any of them think of me or even remember my name. Makes me even question what effect I had on this world and the people I have known. I know sometimes I played the fool and other times I played the Loner. I know I may have done wrong to to others with no malice in my heart, Yet good intentions or not what is wrong is wrong. I may have done some good for a handful of people I have met, yet the majority of the time I was just there and had no effect.

All the dreams I had are now just ghostly thoughts from my youth. What dreams remain are very simple and down to earth. The wandering fool has no direction nor no destination and this wandering fool walks in too many circles. The Wiseman who puts away his wisdom is more a fool than the fool himself. For wisdom and knowledge should be used if not shared and if wasted is as useless as a boat on dry land. And I need to get my boat back out to sea instead of letting it rot on the sandy shore.

The realization that friends and family are the true treasures of life brings this fool one step closer to being a sage. Love is the life force that is in us all and it is the greatest gift god gave us all. Be compassionate and loving to one another, shoulder the weight for your brother and or your sister when they are in need. Look beyond color,sex,origin and religion to see we are all one big family in a quite large house. Put Greed,fear,selfishness and deceit behind you for they are nothing but stumbling blocks on the path to happiness. Most Important is to remember to Love,Forgive and accept yourself as who and what you are.

Looking back on my life I see all the good friends and family I had. I am fortunate to had the friends and family I had and those I still do have. I May be a fool, But a fool can be a Wiseman some of the time.

Peace and Love to you all.
Raymond Barbier